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We are on our summit push soon.
14 May - BC waiting
Andy trimmed his beard, Dave took his "beard" off, so that they could eat more food and less beard. Anselm is keeping himself clean for the summit photos. Jamie will be putting back on his party suit soon. And James is his usual scruffy self, but he is wearing his fav stripey jumper.
David wants to report that while we have previously been "spanked", we are now showing signs of becoming real Everest climbers capable of getting up to Camp 1 or Camp 2 almost effortlessly. Well, it does take a little sweat but we are a fit and healthy and strong team.
All the sherpas are healthy and strong, and today most of the sherpa team are carrying a load to South Col, that 1500m vertical gain load carry... Our sherpa team are doing really well, and in fact Tawa, Jangbu and Sonam Chhring who are our Camp 2 cooking staff are also helping with the load carry. And back in BC, we still have Nima Tenzi and Nawang Geden in the kitchen who can also summit. So in addition to the sherpa climbers, we have plenty of climbers in reserve.
14 May - first SMS message
Thanks for all the text messages! The first one that came thru was:
"Hey slim, u actually startin to look like a proper climber an not the alcoholic brownie making pretend medic u r".
Most others have been less abusive!
15 May - The weather and ropes
Almost every day for the last week has been a potential summit day, more or less windless and fine, except of course the ropes are not in place. I wish we could simply pay Russell Brice for as we do on the North side, the ropes would have been in a week or two ago. Instead yesterday there was a meeting with the major expedition leaders attending. The meager number of expedition leaders there offered various supplies, from sherpas to oxygen and ropes. It was decided that the sherpas (who of course do all the actual work) will have a meeting today. The ropes will not be fixed for a while, and nobody has the sense of urgency that I do.
15 May - NASA Blast Off Party
The afternoon was less serious. The NASA research girls threw a party, oh and Jim, the researcher was there too. As were some of the people who participated in the research. It was fancy dress; Jamie was caught short by the fixed rope meeting and didn't have time for the stretch fleece body suit or breast enhancements.
What did Ryan say to Bridie? - Jamie
What would happen if men had breasts? Angus and Lee, with cowboy Kelly fleeing - Jamie
Bridie, Ryan W, Jamie, Kelly, Lee and Angus at the NASA blast off party
Alan Arnette - Jamie
We are heading up to Camp 2 tomorrow (Friday, 16 May) and will stay there two nights.